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First Film Festival by the blind, created to share WORDWIDE. 

Made a Commercial with influencer w/1Million Subs

Anthony Ferraro joined Blind Can at our HQ in Tallahassee for a skate and a HANG!

Ben and Will BlindCAN Photo.webp

A spectacular vision: the blindCan Film Festival

Cameron Glymph Staff Writer - front page - FEATURE STORY 

When presented with the notion that a blind person can make a film, many people would think it is impossible. Ben Fox, the founder of the blindCAN Film Festival, is showing the Tallahassee Community and the world that blindness isn’t a hindrance to living a full life or using the art of cinema to tell stories. READ FULL STORY

Blind CAN Film Festival 2023

Made the NEWS with our 2 day THREE Venue festival it was AMAZING!

blindCAN provides AUDIO DESCRIPTION LIVE @FilmFEST

The Blind community was in full force at the Tallahassee Film Festival for a movie featuring an actor who is blind, with Audio Description provided live by the blindCAN Film Festival.

Blind CAN joins Blind Football Coach on the field

David Bailly is out coaching rain or shine, with or without vision. 

MAGIC is BLIND on CAMERA! 

Ryan FOX is the Amazing Magician! In Florida making a documentary film with the blindCAN Film Fest and sharing magic at summer camp for blind kids!

blindCAN Commissioned the Worlds Largest Braille Art

History was made with Braille on the streets of Tallahassee and so much more to share. Thank you to so many people, will post more soon. 

blindCAN Flying doors off above NYC in a helicopter

Major shout out to Michael Benson from Visual Experience Foundation for all the adventures he creates and takes our community to experience! This one we were joined by Mrs. World 2012, in addition to my best friend from childhood who is blind!

blindCAN Monthly mini-FEST loved on the NEWS

It was a night for popcorn as we awarded Color Sonrisa an award for best short film internationally! Congrats guys. 

blindCAN Film Adventure at Niagra Falls

A huge thanks to the Visual Experience Foundation and Michael Benson for taking a group of people who are blind for the VIP treatment and behind the scenes tour of Niagra Falls!

blindCAN Riding in the Good YEAR Blimp

Again we must thank Michael Benson and the Visual Experience Foundation, we had an amazing time meeting up with again with Orly Shamir as well. 

blindCAN in the news at Able Artists Gallery

Working While Blind Crew went to film Artist and blindCAN Board Member Fred and the news showed up to cover the amazing talent that was in the room!

blindCAN FilmCREW SURVIVES Furius cat attack! 

Kids at Blind Summer Camp invited our Working While Blind Film Crew to join them in a room FULL of cats at TallyCAT Cafe!

blindCAN blind Art Class in NYC

We joined CoFounder of FAR Technology to speak to a highschool students at the oldest school for the blind in the US. We had a great time in the tactile art room of art teacher Daniel Lubiner. 

blindCAN partners with Able Artists Gallery 

A new partnership is BORN between blindCAN Film Festival and Able Artists Gallery. We are committed to filming the cool things that they feature and will be showing some of our films there. 

blindCAN have Fire Fighters show up to dinner, SMILING

It was traditional Yorkshire Pudding by Clarke Reynolds, and it was an AMAZING MEAL! 5 Alarm Fire in TASTE, and it was only a lot of smoke from the oven, ALL GOOD. 

blindCAN @Tally Jazz Festival with Braille Artist

Music is a great uniting force, and as a filmmaker, Ben Fox got his start filming music events and doing interviews. It was a joy to hear this amazing music with the Blind Braille Artists Clarke Reynolds. 

blindCAN w/blind woman riding bike coast to coast

Becky Andrews rode a tandem bike with her husband from California, we met her at the end of her journey in FL! How amazing to see her after this amazing journey! 

blindCAN in Studio with Speaker/Author Charlie Collins

Great to be filming and helping to raise awareness of the tools that are available to us in the blindness community. Charlie Collins is the author of Tripping Into the Light. 

A spectacular vision: the blindCan Film Festival

Cameron Glymph Staff Writer

When presented with the notion that a blind person can make a film, many people would think it is impossible. Ben Fox, the founder of the blindCAN Film Festival, is showing the Tallahassee Community and the world that blindness isn’t a hindrance to living a full life or using the art of cinema to tell stories.

Fox himself has Retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a form of gradual sight loss that occurs when the retina of the eye is damaged. Before his diagnosis, at just 18 years old, he was accepted to the prestigious Sundance Film Festival. After leaving his passion for filmmaking for years, he founded blindCAN to help other visually impaired people share their stories through film. 

 

“There’s a lot of time that I spent running that I could have spent exploring the possibilities of filmmaking while blind,” said Fox. With determination and a bountiful community of visually impaired people, Fox is mentoring aspiring creatives regardless of their disabilities. blindCAN lets the world know that anyone, including the blind, can be a filmmaker. 

 

The winner of the short, scripted film category of the festival was Micheal Tubiak, who produced the film “When Wet Floor Signs Attack.” Tubiak, who also has RP, hosts a YouTube channel with his friend Steve, where the film was released. The film vilifies “wet floor” signs, which are hard for visually impaired people to navigate around. Tubiak asked his followers on YouTube, many of whom also have visual impairments, to “assemble” as the “RP heroes” (a play on the avengers) and send in videos of themselves defeating wet floor signs. At the end of the film, they were victorious, and not a single sign was left standing in the way of a visually impaired person. 

All the way from Connecticut, Tubiak came to the film festival to show his support for other filmmakers. Tubiak’s son helped him make “When Wet Floor Signs Attack,” and as a blind parent, Tubiak is grateful to be raising a family. Tubiak says that “if [he’s] struggling and needs help with something, [his son] is always there” to help him. A large part of the festival was celebrating the ways that blind people show their abilities simply by doing the things that society would deem impossible to do while blind. Many people would view blindness as a major setback to starting a family, Tubiak shows that it’s possible to do so and, as his son says, be the “cooler parent.”

The highlighted feature film of the evening was “A Shot in the Dark,” which was directed by Chris Suchorsky. The film follows the story of Anthony Ferraro, who, in high school, had aspirations of being the first blind wrestling champion of New Jersey. The film was completely independent and relied on crowd funding to complete — it raised a whopping $87,000. 

 

Ferraro was born completely blind but states that his family “never treated him differently.” Throughout the film, Ferraro recounts his experiences of adversity in sports: he was continually told that he had an “unfair advantage” as a blind athlete or accused of faking his disability. By the end of his career as a high school wrestler, Ferraro had 122 wins, and was one of the most decorated athletes at his school. As Ferarro’s older brother Oliver passed away in 2015, the film has a special place in his heart. “It’s a love story for my brother and it keeps him alive,” said Ferraro. To this day, the film inspires him to “[go] out and do what [he] loves, not making any excuses.” Today, besides through filmmaking, Ferraro shares his story and experiences as a motivational speaker. 

Although the festival primarily focused on films made by the blind, it also featured films by people with other disabilities – one of which was “Ahmad,” directed by Kortisaan “Dario” Vandier, a disabled veteran and Emmy award winner. Vandier wanted to share the story of his younger cousin, Ahmad, who died tragically at just 6 years old. Vandier says his inspiration for the film was his need “to give Ahmad a story and a voice,” and show “how people…navigate through trauma, forgiveness, and work to reclaim what is lost.” Gut wrenching and beautifully made, the film was created using the help of the community in Merritt Island, FL, which is where Ahmad grew up. For Vandier, the purpose of making films is to share “positive, purposeful messages and raise social awareness.”

The festival lasted all day long and would not have been possible if not for the efforts of Alpha Phi Omega, a co-ed service fraternity at FSU. Synnove Mikkelsen, Emily Fitzgerald and Jacob Glance, who are members of the fraternity, were on their feet the entire day assisting Fox with errands, moving around instrument equipment and ensuring everything was running smoothly. Beyond just helping operate the festival, Fitzgerald helped Fox with promotion by creating an Instagram account for the organization. For the members of Alpha Phi Omega, the service work was an incredibly refreshing experience. “It’s such a nice group of people here, and everyone is super kind because they’re all focused on the same goal," said Mikkelsen. The effort put into the blindCAN festival shows the importance of uplifting stories different from our own, and the power of community efforts in raising awareness for social change. 

Fox, who is gradually losing his vision, still sometimes struggles to cope with the possibility of being completely blind one day. Towards the end of the festival, he stated that the films being shown, especially Ferraro’s, have made him “come to peace with his blindness.” In the words of Fox, “film is the next evolution of art.” The blindCAN Film Festival is evidence of this spectacular evolution — the film industry has a bright future ahead of it, and that future includes people of all abilities. All you need is a vision.

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